Bolsonaro will headline a 'Power of the People' rally on Friday

Bolsonaro will headline a ‘Power of the People’ rally with Charlie Kirk on Friday as he is investigated for his role in capital protest by his fans and Biden faces pressure to send him home

  • Jair Bolsonaro left Brazil on Dec. 30 days before his successor was sworn in
  • He was in Florida when his supporters ransacked the country’s congress
  • His lawyer said he had applied for a new six-month U.S. visa on Monday 

Former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro will make his first public speech since leaving office in Miami on Friday.

Details emerged a day after his lawyer said Bolsonaro had applied for a new US visa to stay in the country for another six months, even as investigators at home probe any role he may have played in violent protests that erupted in his country’s capital earlier this month.

He will be introduced by conservative activist Charlie Kirk on Friday evening, deliver a speech and then sit for a question and answer session, according to an organizer.

Bolsonaro has kept a low profile since arriving in Florida at the end of last year. In the meantime President Joe Biden has come under increasing pressure to send the populist leader and ally of Donald Trump back to Brazil.

Jair Bolsonaro has been staying in Florida since flying out of Brazil. On Friday, his lawyer applied for a new visa that would allow him to stay for another six months

Bolsonaro will deliver a speech on Friday with an introduction by Charlie Kirk

It means his words will be parsed for any thoughts on the violence that erupted on Jan. 8 when his supporters went on the rampage, claiming the election was stolen. 

They attacked congress, the supreme court and presidential palace — triggering immediate comparisons with the way Trump supporters ransacked the U.S. Congress two years earlier, and calls for Bolsonaro to be sent home.

It ended a period of calm, while he lived in a quiet Orlando suburb. 

He left Brazil for Florida on Dec. 30, days before his leftist rival Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva was due to be inaugurated.

Since then supporters have gathered outside the villa where he is staying and occasional sightings, such as a KFC visit, have gone viral. 

Democrats are heaping pressure on President Joe Biden, saying the U.S. cannot become a ‘refuge’ for Bolsonaro or other Brazilian officials trying to flee investigations at home

On Friday, he applied for a new visa that would allow him to stay in the U.S. for another six months, according to his lawyer.

‘I think Florida will be his temporary home away from home,’ Alexandre Felipe Alexandre, founder of AG Immigration, told the Financial Times. 

‘Right now, with his situation, I think he needs a little stability.’ 

Bolsonaro was president when he arrived in Florida and had been travelling on an A-1 visa used by diplomats and heads of state.  

But it expired when he left office, giving him 30 days to obtain a new visa or leave.

In the meantime, the Biden administration has come under pressure not to allow him to stay.

Dozens of House Democrats wrote to the White House urging officials to examine Bolsonaro’s status and revoke his visa if necessary.

Supporters of Bolsonaro clashed with police on Jan. 8 in the capital Brasilia

The violent protests immediately provoked comparisons with Donald Trump, Bolsonaro’s close populist ally, and the way his supporters attacked the U.S. Capitol two years earlier

Bolsonaro poses for photos with his supporters outside the home he is staying in at Encore resort at Reunion on January 22, 2023 in Kissimmee, Florida

It also urged the administration to cooperate with investigations in Brazil over the Jan. 8 violence. 

‘We must not allow Mr Bolsonaro or any other former Brazilian officials to take refuge in the United States to escape justice for any crimes they may have committed when in office,’ said the letter, signed by 46 lawmakers. 

The State Department has said repeatedly its policy is not to discuss specific visa cases. 

Brazilian authorities have moved aggressively against the rioters, making more than 1000 arrests in the days after the violence.

The country’s supreme court also said it would investigate Bolsonaro’s role in inspiring the mob.

One of its justices said Bolsonaro had questions to answer for questioning the country’s electoral system and his attacks on the nation’s institutions. 

At the time, the former president’s lawyer said: ‘President Jair Bolsonaro vehemently repudiates the acts of vandalism and depredation of public property committed by those infiltrating the demonstration.

‘He has never had any relationship with or participation in these spontaneous social movements carried out by the population.’

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